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Doing Business with Winthrop University
This guide is designed to be used as a handy reference for vendors on how to do business with Winthrop University's  Purchasing Office. 


About Winthrop University: Winthrop's history dated to 1886, when 21 students gathered in a borrowed one-room building in Columbia.   David Bancroft Johnson, a dedicated and gifted superintendent of schools, headed up the fledgling institution, whose mission was the education of teachers.  Winthrop has changed considerably since moving to its permanent Rock Hill home in 1895, growing from a single classroom to a comprehensive university of distinction.  Winthrop's beautiful 100-acre main campus is complemented by a nearby 450-acre athletics and recreational area.   For more visitor information and directions to the campus, click here.   

About Procurement Services: Winthrop University operates a centralized procurement operation. The purchasing office exists to assist faculty and staff with the acquisition of goods and services. Its objective is to procure goods and services of the proper quality, at the right time, in the proper quantity at an economical price, and from the right source. The purchasing office is organized into two buying teams which have responsibility for the departments they serve. The two functional areas are (1) information technology and academic purchasing and (2) physical plant and operations purchasing. The I/T and academic procurement officer is Linda Campfield, telephone (803) 323-2143. The facilities management and operations procurement officer is Teresia Sexton, telephone (803) 323-2143.

Doing Business With Winthrop University: Winthrop has a central purchasing office responsible for acquiring a wide variety of products and services. Winthrop is a state agency governed by state law as regards the procurement of goods and services. The purpose of this guide is to help you better understand how to do business with Winthrop. 

Governing State Law: The South Carolina Procurement Code governs the expenditure of all funds regardless of source unless specifically exempted. The purchasing office adheres to and abides by the procurement code and its implementing regulations. Where a procurement involves the expenditure of federal assistance or contract funds, Winthrop is required to comply with the federal law and authorized regulations which are applicable. 

Certification: The Division of General Services has certified Winthrop University to make direct purchases of up to $200,000.00 for goods and services, $200,000 for information technology, $200,000.00 for consultant services, and up to $100,000.00 in construction goods and services. Purchases exceeding these limits are forwarded to central state purchasing for processing.  To view all state contracts, click here.

Contracts:  A properly executed purchase order constitutes a contract which is binding on the college and the vendor. The vice president for finance and business affairs, director of procurement services, and designated procurement officers are the only persons authorized to bind Winthrop University. Vendors are cautioned not to accept verbal orders without receiving a purchase order number from the person placing the order. The University will not be responsible for orders received without a valid purchase order. Failure to follow these procedures will result in delayed payments or the return of material to the vendor. 

Direct Contact With Departments: Direct discussion between vendor representatives and potential users in the departments is acceptable on such subject matter as, availability of specified requirements, technical information, instructional information, requests for literature, etc. unless instructed otherwise in a solicitation notice. However, it is University practice that all contacts or correspondence pertaining to negotiations affecting purchases or prospective purchases which involve prices, terms, conditions, and delivery shall be carried on by the purchasing office. Further, all correspondence pertaining to a purchase order which has been placed and which involves prices, terms, conditions, delivery, quantity, substitution, complaint, or anything whatsoever involving the commitment, shall be processed through the purchasing office. 

Office Hours And Appointments: The purchasing office is open from 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM Monday through Friday, except on designated University holidays. Modified summer schedule office hours are: 8:00 AM to 5:30 PM Monday through Thursday; 8:00 AM to 11:30 AM on Friday.   Appointments are required in order to meet with a procurement officer. 

Parking:  Visitor parking spaces on campus are very limited and are available in the front of Tillman Hall marked in green.  If you cannot find a visitors space, please report to the Campus Police office located in the Good Building on Myrtle Drive (between Dinkins and Withers Building) to obtain a visitor's pass. For more information pertaining to parking, click here.

Small Purchases: Orders for less than $10,000 do not require bidding. There are two methods used to process orders for less than $10,000. The first method is by use of the purchasing card, whereby, University department heads and certain others are authorized to purchase goods costing less than $2,500 without processing a purchase order. The second method is by use of the purchase order system. Departments forward their request forms to the purchasing office for processing. If the total estimate is over $2,500 or if a procurement officer feels a better price can be obtained, the order may be informally bid. Final discretionary authority rests with the procurement officer. Otherwise, the orders are processed and sent directly to the suggested vendor. 

Purchases For More Than $10,000.00: Purchases for more than $10,000 require bidding.  Orders between $10,000 and $50,000 are purchased using the Request For Quotation and require advertisement in the "South Carolina Business Opportunities," a biweekly publication published by the state procurement office.

Orders between $50,000 and $200,000 are purchased by the competitive sealed bidding process by Winthrop University (based on the University's current certification limits as described in section "Certification" above).  All such bids are advertised in the "South Carolina Business Opportunities."  Additionally, all such bids are posted in the purchasing office. Bids are advertised for a minimum of 7 days. The bids state an opening date and time. All bid openings are open to the public and may be attended by any interested party. After the bids are opened, they are evaluated by a procurement officer and, if necessary, by the using department. After the lowest responsive and responsible bid is determined, the award is made. The vendor receiving the award is notified of the award by receipt of an approved, signed Statement of Award and a purchase order.

For contracts with a total or potential value of one hundred thousand dollars or greater, notice of an intended award of a contract is given by posting the notice for ten days before entering into a contract and is sent to all bidders responding to the solicitation on the same day that the notice is posted. The posting date appears on the face of all these notices. When only one response is received, the notice of intent to award and the delay of award may be waived.

Orders for more than the University's certification limits are processed by the State materials management office using the competitive sealed bidding process. 

MBE Assistance: Winthrop University fully supports the efforts of the Governor and the State Legislature to assist minority-owned businesses to develop as part of the state's policies and programs which are designed to promote balanced economic and community growth. Therefore, Winthrop wishes to ensure that those businesses owned and operated by minorities in the State of South Carolina are afforded the opportunity to participate fully in the overall procurement process that will result in awarding contracts and subcontracts to certified, qualified and responsive minority business firms. 

Vendor Performance: Vendors are expected to perform per the bidding document/contract with an honest, earnest effort. Delivery times when stated in bidding documents and responded to by the vendor become mandatory delivery times. Vendors not meeting performance standards may be removed from bidders' list, found in default or otherwise penalized. 

Delivery Conditions: All shipments are to be made F.O.B. destination, freight prepaid, to receiving point at Winthrop University, Rock Hill, South Carolina, unless otherwise indicated on the purchase order/contract. If other than FOB destination, as indicated on the purchase order/contract, all transportation, insurance, crating and/or packing charges are to be entered as separate items on seller's invoice. Delivery by the vendor to the common carrier does not constitute delivery to Winthrop University. Any claim for loss or damage incurred during transport shall be between the vendor and the carriers. 

Drug-Free Workplace Act: The Drug-Free Workplace Act requires that persons receiving a grant or contract from a state agency for goods, construction, or services for a stated or estimated value of fifty thousand dollars or more certify to the using agency that it will provide a drug-free workplace. The Drug-Free Workplace Act, Section 44-107-10, Chapter 107 of the South Carolina Code of Laws is so stated in the terms and conditions of each purchase order.

Ethics: Public employment is a public trust. Procurement decisions are made solely on the basis of the South Carolina Procurement Code which prohibits accepting, directly or indirectly, any rebate, gift, money or any thing of value, or any promise of future reward or compensation. Winthrop has adopted the National Institute of Governmental Purchasing (NIGP) Code of Ethics. 

Taxes: Winthrop University is required to pay South Carolina sales taxes. 

Bidders' List: Winthrop University does not maintain a bidders' list. All solicitations over $10,000 are advertised in the "South Carolina Business Opportunities." 

Additional Information: Any question regarding doing business with Winthrop University should be addressed to the director of procurement services, telephone (803) 323-2143. 

Invoicing: Forward all invoices for goods and services to: Accounts Payable, 125 Tillman Hall, Rock Hill, SC  29733 or via email:
 Accounts Payables direct telephone number is: (803) 323-2243.   

Conclusion: When properly executed, Winthrop University's procurement process will benefit both the users at the University and our vendors while assuring the citizens of South Carolina and Winthrop students that their tax moneys and fees are utilized to the best possible advantage.

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